NDTV Explainer: What Is Women’s Reservation Bill

Women MPs posing for a group at the central hall of Parliament. (FILE)

New Delhi:

The Union Cabinet on Monday approved the women’s reservation bill, sources said. The Union Cabinet met this evening after the first sitting of the five-day special session of Parliament.

Sources said several BJP ministers and MPs have been asked to bring women constituents to Parliament in the coming days. BJP president JP Nadda met many of them on Monday.

Several leaders have demanded the introduction of the women’s reservation bill, which guarantees a 33 per cent quota in Lok Sabha and state assemblies. Congress also passed a resolution on it at its Hyderabad Congress Working Committee meeting on Sunday.

All about the Women’s Reservation Bill:

  • The women’s reservation bill seeks to reserve 33 per cent quota in Lok Sabha and state assemblies.
  • One-third of the seats reserved for Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes will be reserved for women from those groups. These reserved seats may be allotted by rotation to different constituencies in the state or union territory.
  • The last concrete development on the issue was in 2010 when Rajya Sabha passed the bill with marshals escorting out some MPs who opposed the move but the bill lapsed as it could not be passed by Lok Sabha.
  • In the present Lok Sabha, 78 women members were elected which account for less than 15 per cent of the total strength of 543. In Rajya Sabha too, women’s representation is about 14 per cent, according to the data shared by the government with Parliament last December.
  • Several state assemblies have less than 10 per cent women representation, including Andhra Pradesh, Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Goa, Gujarat, Himachal Pradesh, Karnataka, Kerala, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Manipur, Meghalaya, Odisha, Sikkim, Tamil Nadu, Telangana, Tripura and Puducherry.
  • Bihar, Haryana, Punjab, Rajasthan, Uttrakhand, Uttar Pradesh and Delhi had 10-12 per cent women MLAs, according to the government data of December 2022. Chattisgarh, West Bengal and Jharkhand led the charts with 14.44 per cent, 13.7 per cent and 12.35 per cent women MLAs, respectively.

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